April 10, 2020—The Center for American Liberty scored another early victory in pursuit of religious liberty—this time for residents of Riverside County. Just one day after the Center for American Liberty sent a demand letter to Riverside County officials threatening imminent litigation, on behalf of religious congregants and organizations, County officials announced an accommodation for Easter weekend services. Now, Riverside County will allow drive-in religious services that practice social distancing, this weekend only.
On April 6, 2020, Riverside County banned “all public or private gatherings…regardless of venue or size.” This ban included all houses of worship.
“Today’s announcement is a significant improvement for residents of Riverside County. We commend County officials for considering our demand letter and making this accommodation for Easter weekend,” said Harmeet K. Dhillon, Chief Executive Officer of the Center for American Liberty. “But we do not believe the accommodation goes far enough. We will continue to advocate for our clients’ religious liberty, which is not limited to Easter weekend.”
“The free exercise of religion is guaranteed by the Constitution, and it is time that government recognize it as such,” Dhillon concluded. During a crisis such as the coronavirus pandemic, religious organizations and services are more important than ever to the faithful, and any arbitrary barriers that purport to assign a second-class importance to religion must fall.”
As a result of the Center for American Liberty’s quick action, the 4.3 million residents of these two counties have reclaimed some of their crucial First Amendment rights. We will continue to advocate for these rights, more crucial than ever in challenging times such as these.
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